Gutters are set at a slight angle so water flows out of them rather than remaining stagnant. They don’t appear slanted because installation pros know exactly what they’re doing, but we assure you they are.
Gutters have a specific slope based on this formula:
¼ of an inch of drop per 10 feet of horizontal gutter
This calculation tells a gutter installation technician where to attach the downspout so that even heavy amounts of precipitation can flow smoothly from your roof. The side of your roof where the downspouts are is the side that should be the lower end.
Long sections of gutter, like across the front of a house, require a downspout on each side. When this is the case, the gutters will need to be pitched from the middle, meaning that the middle of the roofline will be the highest point, and both of the downspouts should be lower than this middle point.
Gutter Pitch Problems
If gutters are installed incorrectly or if they are loose or bent at all, it can cause problems that might be costly and complex to fix.
When there is something wrong with your gutter pitch, it can make water back up in your gutters. Water is a typical problem around the home, as it can result in all of the following issues:
- Rain inside of the gutters can lead to roof damage because of the standing water. When rain backs up in the gutters, water can get underneath the shingles and cause damage to the fascia, sub-roofing and even leak inside your home.
- Standing water is one way mildew and mold can grow on sections of your roof, gutters or siding. Getting rid of mold is a difficult task, especially if it appears on your roof. Mold is known for destroying organic materials (many of which exist in your home) and even making people feel ill.
- The weight of standing water inside your rain gutters can lead them to tear away from your house. The gutters can pull fasteners from the siding, damaging your vinyl or other exterior material. It can also damage landscaping and windows.
Do You Have a Gutter Pitch Problem?
To ensure your gutters are correctly pitched, here are a some of the things you can do:
Look for Hanging Spots
Like we mentioned before, you shouldn’t be able to see the slope of your rain gutters. If you can visibly tell where the low spot is, it is an indication that your gutter has been damaged or that it is getting worn out.
You should be able to see a dip in the gutters from the ground, so this is a safe job that homeowners can do on their own, with both feet on the ground.
Check for Standing Water
Water naturally follows the path of least resistance, so any amount of water inside of your gutters is a problem. If possible, examine the gutters immediately after rainfall so you can see the draining of the water.
This could force you to climb a ladder, so be careful. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, you can have a handyman or a gutter specialist from Discount Gutter Services check it out for you.
Inspect for Shingle Particles
Any tiny granules remaining in the gutters from your shingles are a sign that the rain gutters might not have enough slope, so the water can’t carry these heavier materials away. Grit or sludge inside of your gutters is common after having a new roof installed because it will tend to shed a lot of excess particles in the first few years.
You can climb up and take a look, or you may see some of these particles making their way out of your gutters by way of the downspouts. If you see a small amount in these areas, chances are there is more that is unable to make its way out.
Why is There Overflow?
Gutter overflow is usually caused by a blockage, but it can also be due to incorrect gutter pitch. If water is flowing the wrong way, called “back pitch,” you will probably see water overflowing at the end cap. This can problems for your roof, gutters and surrounding landscaping.
To prevent the possibility of blockage, schedule gutter cleaning at least once a year or install gutter guards. If the gutters are clean but you are still seeing overflow, it’s one more indicator that your gutter pitch may be wrong.
Professional Gutter Damage Repair
When your gutter pitch gets distorted, it can result in a lot of problems for your house. All of the issues above can let you know that your gutter pitch is wrong.
Regardless of whether your rain gutters were damaged during a storm or if they were installed incorrectly in the first place, they need to be re-pitched if you want to avoid expensive home repairs, including damage to siding, leaks and landscape damage.
Gutter Repair in Dayton
The most affordable option will be repairing your existing gutters so the correct pitch is restored. If the gutters are in excellent condition and undamaged, this should be the route Discount Gutter Services encourages.
To re-establish gutter pitch, Discount Gutter Services will loosen the gutter, but they won’t need to take it all the way down. This lowers labor costs and time. Then the technician will measure and determine the correct pitch and reinstall the gutters, moving fasteners if necessary, to fit the specific measurements.
Gutter Installation in Dayton
If your gutters are permanently damaged, or if they are rusting or wearing down with age, Discount Gutter Services may recommend to replace them instead of re-pitching them. This will be more economical over time and time-saving.
If your gutters have to be replaced with new ones, they will include new fasteners, hardware and downspouts. The installer will set the gutters at the appropriate pitch. You can use the tips in this blog post to make sure the new installation is done correctly.